DR

Mark Jameson

Acronis has announced the availability of Acronis Disaster Recovery Cloud to enable our Service Provider partners to deliver disaster recovery services to their clients. You are using Acronis Backup Cloud, but you now ask yourself why should I use Acronis Disaster Recovery Cloud and how do I get started? I would like to help you answer these questions.

Hi, I am Mark Jameson, the General Manager of Disaster Recovery Business at Acronis.  I am a business person, not a marketing person.  So why have I decided to write a blog? Well, today I felt compelled to share my thoughts with you because something important has happened.

Is there an ROI in IT Disaster Recovery?

In light of recent U.S. and global catastrophes, disaster recovery (DR) and business continuity are top of mind for more and more IT professionals like you. Even CIOs are asking more questions about business continuity plans and how the IT department will respond in the event of a disaster.

According to an ITIC survey, one hour of downtime can cost over $100,000. If your company is smaller, you can be at an even greater risk. An estimated 25% of small businesses do not reopen following a major disaster. If you do not have a business continuity plan, your company can quickly become a statistic.

Black Swan in the Data Center or How to Prepare for a Disaster

In today’s blog, I’d like to step away from the technical aspects of disaster recovery and focus on the human impact. With that in mind, I’d like to introduce you to one of my favorite books on the subject of predictability and inevitability: The Black Swan by Nassim Nicholas Taleb.

 

The book describes Black Swan events as unexpected and unpredictable. However, a person or organization can plan for negative events, and by doing so strengthen their ability to respond, as well as exploit positive events. Taleb contends in his book that people in general — and specifically within companies and enterprises — are very vulnerable to hazardous Black Swan events and can be exposed to high losses if unprepared.

 

Not if, but when!

 

Backup and Disaster Recovery Solution. When do you need it?

Companies, big and small, that heavily rely on IT, know very well that backup is not a luxury but a requirement. Whether it is your internal documents, or customer-facing marketing information, or fast-changing transactional data – it needs to be protected. Losing data is a disaster by itself, and can cause even more disastrous consequences if it is not restored in reasonable time.

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IT Pros: Verify that Data Protection Plans Are Working Properly

A logical first step to ensure company data is safe and secure is for IT leaders to create a data protection plan. It’s becoming more difficult to develop that plan as the definition of data that businesses must protect expands, though planning is still an important initial step.

And it’s only the first step. IT pros must also continuously test the plan to ensure it’s fully implemented and that it works properly.

Never Underestimate Your Resource & Skillset Requirements

The final post in this series of five hidden DR hazards involves underestimating your resource and skillset requirements. When creating a do-it-yourself disaster recovery solution, you must consider your team’s personal priorities and also their ability to access your remote site.

One of the biggest mistakes that you can make is to assume that your staff will be available during a disaster. Because of the interdependence on skillsets that DIY disaster recovery demands, it is virtually impossible to guarantee that your entire team will be available to work during a medium to large scale incident. In a massive geographic disaster, the priorities of your top IT employees will be on personal needs, like the safety and well-being of their families.

How to Avoid Hardware/ Software Drift

I’ve been writing about the hidden hazards of do-it-yourself disaster recovery. One of these hazards is hardware/software drift. Since your disaster recovery site represents a working replica of the production environment, it will need to be maintained on an ongoing basis. There are several strategies for how hardware and software are provisioned for your DR site. The strategies you choose will determine the how much maintenance will be needed to keep your DR site running at an optimal level.

There are two main techniques for acquiring hardware for a disaster recovery site, although you may want to use a combination of both. One technique is to replace hardware (i.e. a server) that is no longer covered by warranty with new hardware and use the old hardware for disaster recovery. Another strategy is to buy or lease new equipment to use at the DR site.

The Hidden Hazards of SAN-to-SAN Replication

It might be tempting to create a “do-it-yourself” disaster recovery solution by purchasing additional hardware and installing it in a branch office or colocation facility. But creating an effective disaster recovery solution is a complex project and there are several unplanned costs and other hidden hazards associated with it. I’ll identify some of these hidden hazards over the next few weeks.

I’ll begin with SAN to SAN replication. Any SAN manufacturer with a clear understanding of storage space has some kind of SAN to SAN replication offer, but not all SAN to SAN replication is alike. When creating an effective DR solution, you have to make several architectural considerations for replicating data between production and DR, including virtualization, application specific agents and snapshot storage requirements.